These Copycat Texas Roadhouse Rattlesnake Bites Are Pure Cheesy Heaven

Make Texas Roadhouse Rattlesnake Bites at home with this easy recipe that uses just a few simple ingredients.

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Texas Roadhouse Rattlesnake Bites are among the restaurant’s top-selling menu items. For good reason, too—they’re pure cheese heaven in a basket.

No Texas Roadhouse nearby? You don’t have to miss out. We’ve created the absolute best restaurant copycat recipe for their Rattlesnake Bites. Prepare these for an appetizer, and then check out these other Texas Roadhouse-inspired recipes to round out your menu.

What Are Rattlesnake Bites?

While the name might be off-putting to some, even those with severe ophidiophobia (fear of snakes) can enjoy Texas Roadhouse Rattlesnake Bites. That’s because these deep-fried golden balls do not contain rattlesnake; they’re filled with cheese!

With a crispy golden exterior and a hot, gooey molten cheese interior flecked with spicy pieces of jalapeno, Rattlesnake Bites can be best described as a combination of jalapeno poppers and mozzarella sticks.

Served with a side of either creamy ranch dressing or Cajun sauce for dipping, Rattlesnake Bites will satisfy any craving for something ooey, gooey and oh-so cheesy.

How to Make Texas Roadhouse Rattlesnake Bites

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Yield: 24 bites

Ingredients

  • 4 cups Monterey Jack cheese, shredded (equivalent to a 16-ounce block)
  • 1/2 cup pickled jalapeno slices, finely diced
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 1/4 cup plain breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup finely ground cornmeal (or masa harina)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Canola or vegetable oil, for frying
  • Ranch dressing or Cajun-style sauce, for dipping (optional)

Directions

Step 1: Combine

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In a medium bowl, combine the shredded cheese and diced jalapeños.

Editor’s Tip: Make sure you squeeze as much excess moisture from the jalapenos before adding them to the cheese. Skipping this crucial step will make the cheese difficult to shape into balls.

Step 2: Shape

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Using your hands, take some of the jalapeno-cheese mixture and roll it into a 1-inch ball. Be sure to squeeze tightly to compress the cheese to ensure the balls hold their shape. Repeat with the remaining cheese mixture.

Arrange the cheese balls on a sheet pan so they don’t touch. Freeze for 30-60 minutes.

Editor’s Tip: Do not skip this step, as it is what firms the cheese up enough to prevent it from leaking out of the breading while frying. We do not recommend freezing the balls for more than an hour as the cheese may not melt fully during frying if frozen solid.

Step 3: Prepare breading

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Shortly before removing the cheese from the freezer, prepare a workstation for breading the Rattlesnake Bites. In one bowl, combine the flour, salt and black pepper. In a second bowl, beat together the egg and milk. And in a third bowl, whisk together the breadcrumbs (here’s how to make your own breadcrumbs), cornmeal, cayenne and garlic powder.

Step 4: Preheat

Preheat the oil in your deep fryer to 350°F.

Editor’s Tip: If you don’t have a deep fryer, you may also fill a deep cast-iron Dutch oven with 2 inches of oil. Use a candy thermometer to keep track of the oil’s temperature.

Step 5: Roll, dip and coat

Remove the cheese balls from the freezer. Working quickly, roll each cheeseball through the seasoned flour. Next, dip the balls into the egg mixture before coating each in the cornmeal/breadcrumb mixture.

Step 6: Fry

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Working in batches, carefully lower 3 to 4 of the breaded Rattlesnake Bites into the preheated oil of choice for frying. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes, turning occasionally, until golden on all sides.

Step 7: Drain and cool

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Remove the Rattlesnake Bites from the fryer and transfer them to a paper towel-lined plate to drain and cool slightly. Resist the urge to sink your teeth into these cheesy bites until they’ve had a chance to cool. Be warned that the cheese will be hot!

Step 8: Serve

Serve warm with a side of homemade ranch dressing or Cajun dipping sauce.

Tips for Making Rattlesnake Bites

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Cheese Matters

Choosing the right type of cheese for Rattlesnake Bites is key for replicating that molten puddle of cheese goodness hiding within each golden nugget.

We found Monterey Jack to be the best option that tastes most like the cheese Texas Roadhouse uses and is widely accessible in most supermarkets. In testing, we also found quesadilla cheese (an authentic Mexican-style melting cheese) to work beautifully. If you want your Rattlesnake Bites to have an extra kick, pepper jack cheese or a ghost pepper jack cheese would also work great.

Use Fine Breadcrumbs

The coating on Texas Roadhouse Rattlesnake Bites is almost a hybrid between a breading and a batter because the breadcrumbs they use are ground so fine.

To replicate this unique consistency, we found pulsing the breadcrumbs and cornmeal in a high-powered blender or coffee grinder for a few seconds did the trick. It’s by no means necessary, but if you want the best copycat Rattlesnake Bites, it’s worth the extra effort.

Monitor Your Oil Temperature

When deep frying, oil temperature is important. Use a candy thermometer (unless your deep fryer has a built-in thermometer) to maintain a consistent oil temperature.

If your oil is too hot, your Rattlesnake Bites will burn before the cheese is fully melted. If your oil is too cold, they will absorb the oil, causing the rattlesnake bites to taste extra greasy (yuck!). Try your best to stay in the 350° sweet spot for the best results.

Pickled vs. Fresh Jalapenos

If you have fresh jalapenos on hand, you may swap them for the pickled jalapenos if desired. Just know the flavor will be slightly less authentic. In testing, we found jarred pickled jalapenos to have a taste and texture most like the peppers in Texas Roadhouse Rattlesnake Bites.

Next Up: Whip up (pun intended) some homemade Texas Roadhouse cinnamon butter and fresh rolls.

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Lauren Habermehl
Lauren Habermehl is a recipe developer, food photographer and creator of the blog, Frydae. She is a prolific quoter of FRIENDS, lover of weekend DIY projects and procrastinating fitness enthusiast who enjoys exploring the Milwaukee-area with her husband, daughter and ugly mutt named Tyson Doodles.